Manuscript Progress and Antidepressant Adventures

Ten days since my last entry isn’t so bad, really.  Not when it’s been caused alternately by furious manuscriptural progress (yeah, I made that word up, and I quite like it, thanks for noticing) and some pharmaceutical adventures, the latter of which I was rather slow to catch onto.

First of all, I’m more than halfway through this manuscript revision, which is significant because close to the first 1/3 was new material that had to be connected and smoothed into the existing text, and now that I’ve passed that juncture I anticipate veritably flying through the remaining work.  In other words, I am optimistic.  But then, I am rarely pessimistic, so we should take my optimism with a shaker’s worth of salt.

As to the pharmaceutical adventures, it’s a rather long, roundabout story, but the short version is that our new medical insurance policy very much prefers not to cover my customary antidepressant (hereafter Drug B), so I switched to another variety that has the same active ingredient (Drug C).  I was assured that very few people have trouble with this change as the two drugs are very similar, and I am so far from being picky about brand or method as long as the darn stuff WORKS that I readily filled the prescription.  Unfortunately, I am part of the “very few people” who do not adjust seamlessly to the new (to me) drug.

For about the last week and a half I have had seriously strange dreams–abnormal ones, for me.  Not scary dreams, just uber weird.  Pretty much every night, three or four a night.  I know this because I wake up between all of them and have trouble getting back to sleep, which leads to a tired Betsy.  I’ve been taking naps most mornings, and have only proceeded from napping to writing (rather than reading or watching “A-Team” episodes on Netflix) about every other day.  Finally, sometime in the nighttime hours no one should ever witness between Thursday and Friday, it dawned on me that there is only one other time something like this has happened to me–and it was almost two years ago, with the very first antidepressant I tried.  This reaction isn’t as severe as the first one, but then I was on Drug A for a month and a half, and Drug C for only two weeks.  Less time to develop strangeness.

At any rate, I called the doctor folks on Friday morning and after numerous call-backs for them to verify lots of angles, I am now gradually shifting to Drug D. If it works, great.  If not, I know that the doctor can jump through some hoops and get Drug B (my antidepressant of choice) approved coverage with the insurance, if it’s the only thing that works for me.  I’m not sure how many others I’ll have to try before they can conclude that I actually do need Drug B.

All in all, I’m not all that upset at present.  I’d much rather not have to jump through hoops (either personally or via my doctor) to get what I need to be healthy.  On the other hand, if they make me try several more medicines before we find one that works, I can see the next two or three or four months basically going down the drain, practically speaking.  As it is, barring severe immediate issues, I have to stay on Drug D until Christmas, more or less, before they’ll consider trying me on something else.  I have not yet run through even all the antidepressants that most people would recognize on hearing because of various advertisements, much less any lesser-known ones.

But I am trying to remain optimistic, because getting pessimistic about depression tends to be a rapid downward spiral and we can certainly do without any of that.

All that to say, another week (probably) of funky dreams before I’ve totally phased out Drug C, and then we’ll see how well Drug D works through my winter depressive slump.

And now back to my regularly scheduled manuscript edits.

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